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JerseyJoey

Cael, Askren, Burroughs, McIlravy, Gable have in common?

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They all were 17 when they graduated HS.

 

There are a bunch of other guys too, couldn't fit them all in the subject.

 

I thought of this in light of the other thread about best HS wrestlers ever, where a lot of them were let's just say on the more mature side. It's funny that many of the guys that wound up being the absolute best at the next levels were not the ones that won 4 state titles (though some of the above did...5 for McIlravy) . The trend seems even more pronounced with big guys (Kerry McCoy and Stephen Neal were also both 17 when they graduated HS...with only 1 state title between them.)

 

Food for thought for all the folks that think keeping kids back makes them better wrestlers in the long run. Yes, there are times when it works out. But for everyone one of those there are a bunch of guys who bust at the next level because they've built a career out of just hitting lateral drops on kids they have 2 years on.

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I think it's more about styles and the level of technical proficiency achieved than maturity or age, if you're looking to predict college-level success. Obviously, in high school, one or two extra years of physical maturity gives you a meaningful edge. But there are lots of guys who graduated HS at 19 or older who you could point to as successful case studies of holding kids back actually working. There are probably more cases of college success after being held back than not, though I don't have the time to figure out the numbers.

 

As you said, there are those guys who, by their junior or senior year, are men among boys and use that physical maturity to dominate. Then they get to college and that huge physical edge evaporates and their go-to moves don't work anymore.

 

But there are also guys who use that extra year to refine technique and end up being that much better irrespective of their physical advantages during HS. Cary Kolat, Logan Stieber, and Aaron Pico are guys from three different eras that come to mind right away. (Obviously, Pico is still young and the jury is still way out on him as a college wrestler, which is why I chose him as an example of the most recent generation, but nobody can argue that his edge over others is physical maturity when he's younger than most of the top 10 studs he's beating the crap out of.)

 

Of course, you sometimes also get the kids with seemingly infinite ceilings like Jordan Burroughs who would've been successful no matter how early or late they would've graduated HS. But those cases are pretty rare.

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I'm not making the argument that graduating at 17 is "better" per se, although I do think it is for some people. I do think staying back is detremential for a lot of wrestlers. Look, even Kolat has said that he got burnt out at times. And this is crazy to say considering his success, but Kolat still underperformed what people thought about him coming out of HS. Obviously it's too early to say on Pico and Steiber, hopefully they stay with it and don't get bored in Pico's case. To your point, Pico's success is not because of his age...and looking at some other examples it might be in spite of it.

 

You are making a big assumption on Burroughs. What if he was always the old kid and used the physical dominance that he has now to just headlock folks back in the day? I would argue that Jordan, because of his gifts, is EXACTLY the guy that sometimes can stagnate by staying back.

 

There isn't an answer to this. But there are two things that are pretty certain:

 

1) You can graduate HS at 17 and becom one of the best wrestlers of all-time. Any list of best all around American wrestlers is going to start with Cael, Smith and Gable and will be followed close behind by Burroughs, Kemp, Lewis and some of the other guys I mentioned.

 

2) There absolutely ARE wrestlers that dominate at the HS level due to physical maturity and then flame out once they get onto the same level playing field. And let's assume that you are going to start at the same age anyway and that you are only going to have a finite number of years in the sport. Where do you want to use those years? In 3rd grade?

 

I just think it's funny that I occasionally hear some Dads who are considering holding their kids back because they think they have the next Cael or Burroughs...two guys that graduated HS at 17. More likely they are building the next Brandon type kid that lateral drops everyone 2 years younger than them but then disappear at the next level. (Sorry Brandon..but it's true.)

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3X champ Lowell Lange was 17 when he graduated from HS.

 

Yeah, but that was when people only lived until 30 or so. :)

 

Certainly there are a lot of contemporary examples, including probably the 2 best Americans in the past 20 years. If you want to throw Dake into the mix, he was also "normal" age, turned 18 in February of his senior year in HS.

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Interesting.

 

Although the extra year in HS gets you noticed.

 

Burroughs was recruited because Manning came to recruit Vince Jones and saw something in Burroughs. He was skinny in HS and wasn't even a all-american his first year in college. He improved a lot as a sophomore and then a junior, he won of the most stacked weight classes in recent memory and completed the year without losing.

 

From your list, John Smith is the only other guy on that list that didn't make it to the finals his freshman year. and like Burroughs, he was an unbelievable junior in college

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Actually it's not really an achievement to graduate at 17. It just depends on when your birthday is during the year, but a good number of kids in any HS class probably are 17 years old. Now I think it's quite a statement that many people in the wrestling world may think it's an achievement because parents will hold their kids back for 1 or even 2 years so they'll have a huge physical edge over other kids in sports. That's cheating in my opinion.

 

I think if a kid is 2 years older than the average oldest kids in his grade that he shouldn't be permitted to compete against younger kids, he should be pushed to the next higher level or not allowed to compete at all. I saw a picture of Marstellar in the 9th grade with a thicker beard than most Amish men! That's flat out ridiculous. How old is the kid, 17 or 18 in the 9th grade? Here's the scary thing though...that Marstellar doesn't have the advantage in physical development due to age, but simply due to the fact that he's a genetic monster. Anyway I wish him well and have heard he's a great kid...but I think it's less than noble to hold one's kids back for an advantage in sports.

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Any list of best all around American wrestlers is going to start with Cael, Smith and Gable and will be followed close behind by Burroughs, Kemp, Lewis and some of the other guys I mentioned.

 

1) Kemp is not "behind" Gable in any sense. Kemp is a three-time undefeated NCAA champ and three-time world champ.

 

In contrast, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. Kemp also has a head-to-head win over Gable. Kemp's record is better than Gable's.

 

2) Burroughs is not "behind" Gable, nor is he comparable to Lewis. Burroughs is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ, and two-time world champ. He's also been undefeated in international competition for over two years, in an era of only seven weight classes and the breakup of the Soviet bloc.

 

Like Burroughs, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. However, Gable was only undefeated in one year of international competition, and he wrestled in an era of ten weight classes and the Soviet Union. Burroughs's international record is better.

 

Lewis was a two-time NCAA champ, but he was only a one-time world champ, and it came in the extremely diluted 1984 Olympics. There were ten weight classes, and most of the wrestling countries boycotted those Games. Burroughs's international record is significantly better than Lewis's.

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Education:

 

Being an old high school teammate of Randy Lewis, I thought I might mention these facts about Randy....

 

* Jr World Champ

** Olympic Champ in 84, defeating one of the best fields ever at 136.5 to make the team.

*** Just missed making FOUR Olympic teams- He very well could have won the 1980 Olympics, was 1st, 1st, 2nd ( to John Smith by ONE ill-advised missed gator -roll, perhaps), and 4th going up a weight.

**** his win streak snapped by injury default, otherwise he had 81 in a row...this from Mike Chapman :

"The hyperextension of Randy Lewis’s elbow during a match his final season (1981) was the worst injury I ever saw in 40 years of following college wrestling. If not for that injury, Lewis could well have made the list. He was NCAA runnerup as a pure freshman, undefeated NCAA champion as a sophomore and moved up a weight as a junior to beat the defending NCAA champion, Darryl Burley of Lehigh, a great champion in his own right. (Lewis also made the 1980 Olympic team while still in college.)

 

Riding an 81-match winning streak, Lewis blew his elbow out midway through his senior year and still came back to place seventh, basically wrestling with one arm."

 

**** his major decision over defending NCAA champ and 4 time finalist Darryl Burley proved Lewis' worthiness in any all time discussion, as well as his 6 point win over John Azevedo in the 79 finals- Azevedo was not only undefeated up til that final, but also made the 1980 Olympic Team.

Randy was just a junior when I showed up at Wisconsin, and you should have heard my teammates singing his praises. I was almost embarrassed!

 

 

***** he defeated World Silver Lee Roy Smith in a hotly contested match to make the 84 team

 

******his gut-wrench was unstoppable in 1984, I highly doubt that Belaglasov would have stopped it.

 

*******he has defeated MANY World level medalists/champions, probably the most of all time for any US competitor, not sure Baumgartner's numbers tho. Not sure who is even close.

 

*********was on track to break all time Iowa career pin record before injury

 

 

********he turned 18 in May of his high school senior year, so not sure his name should come up in this thread anyway

 

Just sayin.....

if Mike Chapman is saying it.....hey....he's the Great Observer

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Any list of best all around American wrestlers is going to start with Cael, Smith and Gable and will be followed close behind by Burroughs, Kemp, Lewis and some of the other guys I mentioned.

 

1) Kemp is not "behind" Gable in any sense. Kemp is a three-time undefeated NCAA champ and three-time world champ.

 

In contrast, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. Kemp also has a head-to-head win over Gable. Kemp's record is better than Gable's.

 

2) Burroughs is not "behind" Gable, nor is he comparable to Lewis. Burroughs is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ, and two-time world champ. He's also been undefeated in international competition for over two years, in an era of only seven weight classes and the breakup of the Soviet bloc.

 

Like Burroughs, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. However, Gable was only undefeated in one year of international competition, and he wrestled in an era of ten weight classes and the Soviet Union. Burroughs's international record is better.

 

Lewis was a two-time NCAA champ, but he was only a one-time world champ, and it came in the extremely diluted 1984 Olympics. There were ten weight classes, and most of the wrestling countries boycotted those Games. Burroughs's international record is significantly better than Lewis's.

 

Very impressive rebuttal, The_Education.

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Any list of best all around American wrestlers is going to start with Cael, Smith and Gable and will be followed close behind by Burroughs, Kemp, Lewis and some of the other guys I mentioned.

 

1) Kemp is not "behind" Gable in any sense. Kemp is a three-time undefeated NCAA champ and three-time world champ.

 

In contrast, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. Kemp also has a head-to-head win over Gable. Kemp's record is better than Gable's.

 

2) Burroughs is not "behind" Gable, nor is he comparable to Lewis. Burroughs is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ, and two-time world champ. He's also been undefeated in international competition for over two years, in an era of only seven weight classes and the breakup of the Soviet bloc.

 

Like Burroughs, Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ and two-time world champ. However, Gable was only undefeated in one year of international competition, and he wrestled in an era of ten weight classes and the Soviet Union. Burroughs's international record is better.

 

Lewis was a two-time NCAA champ, but he was only a one-time world champ, and it came in the extremely diluted 1984 Olympics. There were ten weight classes, and most of the wrestling countries boycotted those Games. Burroughs's international record is significantly better than Lewis's.

 

Gable NCAA record is 181-1 and his international record is 30-1. Gable was 2-0 in World Championships/Olympics

Kemp NCAA record is 143-6-1 and his international record is 53-8. Kemp was 3-1 in World Championships.

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Do Gable's titles get any more credence because he got one of them at the Olympics? I know Kemp had his chance at the Olympic title stolen from him and that he was the favorite in that year after dominating internationally for three years but he still did not win the Olympics.

 

Kemp did beat Gable after his Olympic run was over but I don't think that means he automatically had a better career. It is also I believe unfair to say that because Kemp had one more title then he gets the nod. Gable only had 3 years of eligibility to Kemps 4. Kemp lost in the finals his freshman year against... Yagla? Yagla was a 2x champ but still. I believe Owings ended up being a 2x champ like Yagla... not the same as facing that 2x champ as a freshman but still he wasn't some flash in the pan and that was his ONLY loss.

 

Gable also went unscored upon at the Olympics with his body half falling apart and was (almost) single handedly responsible for an explosion in wrestlings popularity in the US. He also was a prolific pinner & went undefeated through HS, College (up until his last finals match), then at every World and Olympic event he entered, then went on to win more NCAA titles than any coach in any sport ever. Now that doesn't mean he was better than Kemp or anything but I think all factors considered Gable and Kemp are pretty even.

 

Those are both absolutely amazing and Kemp has always been one of my heros but so is Gable.

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Gable NCAA record is 181-1 and his international record is 30-1. Gable was 2-0 in World Championships/Olympics

Kemp NCAA record is 143-6-1 and his international record is 53-8. Kemp was 3-1 in World Championships.

Isn't the 181-1 Dan Gable's high school and college record?

 

Tobus - re Marsteller's age, he competed in Fargo as a cadet between his 8th and 9th grade years, I believe winning freestyle and placing 4th or 5th in Greco (won both styles between his soph freshman and sophomore years - July 2011).

 

No different than a lot of his peers.

 

Kids are cadets for 2 years (typically 8th and 9th grade or 9th and 10th grade - although it seems that there are more and more 7th grade cadets now). My son was a cadet in his 9th and 10th grade years (early spring birthday). When he was a younger age-group wrestler, I never cared if he was wrestling someone older than him that was in a grade (or 2) below. Even better, neither did he.

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Gable NCAA record is 181-1 and his international record is 30-1. Gable was 2-0 in World Championships/Olympics

Kemp NCAA record is 143-6-1 and his international record is 53-8. Kemp was 3-1 in World Championships.

 

Re NCAA wrestling. However you want to break it down, Gable only had two undefeated NCAA seasons. We don't know if he would have been an undefeated NCAA champ his freshman year. It's not fair, but that's the way it is. Gable is a two-time undefeated NCAA champ.

 

Kemp, in contrast, was a three-time undefeated NCAA champ. All his losses came his true freshman year, which was the year he lost to Yagla in the finals by split referee's decision. Kemp is a three-time undefeated NCAA champ.

 

In terms of actual accomplishments, Kemp's NCAA record is better. If you want to compare career winning percentages, it's apples-and-oranges, because Kemp wrestled as a true freshman while Gable did not. Gable only wrestled his sophomore through senior years. If you compare sophomore through senior years, Kemp's winning percentage is better.

 

Re freestyle. Let's exclude Gable's freestyle losses while he was in college to guys like Sanders, Huff, Hatta, and Douglas. He was in college, so whatever. Who cares.

 

But look at this. In 1970, in the summer after Gable graduated from college, he lost to Bobby Douglas and didn't make the world team. In 1971 he lost to a Russian at Tblisi. In 1971 he tied a second Russian in a dual meet. By my counting, that's more than one freestyle loss. At any rate, he's a two-time world champ.

 

In contrast, Kemp won a world title in 1978, the summer after he graduated from college. Kemp also did not have a chance to wrestle in the 1980 Olympics. That's not fair, just like Gable's inability to wrestle his freshman year was not fair. Kemp beat the 1980 Olympic champ soon after the 1980 Olympics, and was a returning two-time world champ, so it's likely he would have been the 1980 Olympic champ. But as history actually happened, he didn't get to compete in the 1980 Olympics. So he ended up being a three-time world champ rather than a four-time world champ. It's not fair, but that's the way it is.

 

Even so, in terms of actual accomplishments, Kemp's international record is better. If you want to compare wins and losses, again, it's apples-and-oranges because Kemp wrestled internationally from 1978 to 1983 (?), while Gable only wrestled internationally from 1970 to 1972.

 

If you want to put Gable and Kemp in the same category, fine, but there is no way Gable's record is better than Kemp's.

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Lewis was a two-time NCAA champ, but he was only a one-time world champ, and it came in the extremely diluted 1984 Olympics. There were ten weight classes, and most of the wrestling countries boycotted those Games. Burroughs's international record is significantly better than Lewis's.

 

Did Lewis ever make the World Team? If so, how did he do in the Worlds? I can't seem to locate any results.

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Actually it's not really an achievement to graduate at 17. It just depends on when your birthday is during the year, but a good number of kids in any HS class probably are 17 years old. Now I think it's quite a statement that many people in the wrestling world may think it's an achievement because parents will hold their kids back for 1 or even 2 years so they'll have a huge physical edge over other kids in sports. That's cheating in my opinion.

 

I think if a kid is 2 years older than the average oldest kids in his grade that he shouldn't be permitted to compete against younger kids, he should be pushed to the next higher level or not allowed to compete at all. I saw a picture of Marstellar in the 9th grade with a thicker beard than most Amish men! That's flat out ridiculous. How old is the kid, 17 or 18 in the 9th grade? Here's the scary thing though...that Marstellar doesn't have the advantage in physical development due to age, but simply due to the fact that he's a genetic monster. Anyway I wish him well and have heard he's a great kid...but I think it's less than noble to hold one's kids back for an advantage in sports.

 

Easy there, Big Fella. Talk like this will lead to personal attacks from "Leshisanidiot".

 

Of course it's cheating, but if you can get away with it, why not? (I'm being facetious, but that's the attitude of some of those posting here).

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And then there were the guys who went off to fight a War at 17 or 18, then came home to wrestle. I don't care who you think was great at 17 or 18 ... It's the previous generation, that had the balls. Koll and others.

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Gable dominated like few ever have pinning and destroying those he did not pin. Look at his team trial results crushing everyone that he wrestled then the same at the Olympics. Also back in the day of wrestling it was extremely hard to continue competing more than a few years as there was no Olympic training camp or compensation for wrestling. No OTC for wrestler's to train with coaches. With pinning still the ultimate in wrestling Gable's years of dominance still put him at or near the top of list of our GREATS IMHO.

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Gable NCAA record is 181-1 and his international record is 30-1. Gable was 2-0 in World Championships/Olympics

Kemp NCAA record is 143-6-1 and his international record is 53-8. Kemp was 3-1 in World Championships.

Isn't the 181-1 Dan Gable's high school and college record?

 

Tobus - re Marsteller's age, he competed in Fargo as a cadet between his 8th and 9th grade years, I believe winning freestyle and placing 4th or 5th in Greco (won both styles between his soph freshman and sophomore years - July 2011).

 

No different than a lot of his peers.

 

Kids are cadets for 2 years (typically 8th and 9th grade or 9th and 10th grade - although it seems that there are more and more 7th grade cadets now). My son was a cadet in his 9th and 10th grade years (early spring birthday). When he was a younger age-group wrestler, I never cared if he was wrestling someone older than him that was in a grade (or 2) below. Even better, neither did he.

 

Yep, you are correct, my mistake. College record I think was 98-1.

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He got hosed in a great semi-final vs Simeon Schterev - cheated out of points.

GREAT MATCH though....so he ended up 4th.

 

 

 

 

You can find all results at :

 

http://www.foeldeak.com/wrestlingdataba ... anguage=en

 

 

 

 

Lewis was a two-time NCAA champ, but he was only a one-time world champ, and it came in the extremely diluted 1984 Olympics. There were ten weight classes, and most of the wrestling countries boycotted those Games. Burroughs's international record is significantly better than Lewis's.

 

Did Lewis ever make the World Team? If so, how did he do in the Worlds? I can't seem to locate any results.

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Gable's college record was 94-1 with 71 falls. Gable wrestled unattached his freshman year: he did not lose. In fact, he won the Midlands that year beating Don Behm and Masaaki Hatta, and was name the tournament's outstanding wrestler.

 

Burrough's record at Nebraska was 128-20, with 12 pins. He lost six matches as a sophmore, 13 as a freshman, and of course the medical default in what would have been his junior year.

 

Lee Kemp was 143-6-1; 47 pins. He lost five as a freshman, zero in his sophmore year, once as a junior, and was tied in his senior year.

 

Kemp was outstanding as a freestyler and Burrough is off to a great start. Gable, however, was clearly the more dominate wrestler of the three in college.

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Gable's college record was 94-1 with 71 falls. Gable wrestled unattached his freshman year: he did not lose. In fact, he won the Midlands that year beating Don Behm and Masaaki Hatta, and was name the tournament's outstanding wrestler.

 

Burrough's record at Nebraska was 128-20, with 12 pins. He lost six matches as a sophmore, 13 as a freshman, and of course the medical default in what would have been his junior year.

 

Lee Kemp was 143-6-1; 47 pins. He lost five as a freshman, zero in his sophmore year, once as a junior, and was tied in his senior year.

 

Kemp was outstanding as a freestyler and Burrough is off to a great start. Gable, however, was clearly the more dominate wrestler of the three in college.

 

I don't understand why some non-official matches matter to you and others don't.

 

Gable's freshman matches were not official matches, yet you count them. Gable also had non-official folkstyle matches after college. Why not count those? Gable also had freestyle losses during college to Sanders, Huff, Hatta, and Douglas. Why not count those? Gable also lost to Kemp when Kemp was 18. Why not count that?

 

Also, Kemp's post-freshman-year loss was to a non-college athlete, thereby not making it an official college loss. Officially, Kemp was an undefeated, three-time NCAA champ. Why do you count his non-official loss while ignoring some of Gable's non-official results?

 

I think the only fair way to look at it is to only consider official college matches when looking at college careers. As far as official matches go, Kemp went undefeated from his sophomore year to senior year, while Gable lost once from his sophomore year to senior year.

 

As far as freestyle goes, Burroughs has already surpassed Gable's accomplishments.

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